Omololu Ogunmade in Abuja
The Federal Executive Council (FEC) yesterday in Abuja approved a national leather policy for the country.
Briefing journalists at the end of the weekly FEC meeting, the Minister of Science and Technology, Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu, said implementation of the policy would help in the production of finished goods such as shoes and bags.
According to him, the promotion of leather technology would enhance the deployment of the needed indigenous technology in Nigeria, emphasising that with the policy, leather from Nigeria could now be processed into finished goods before export.
Onu also explained that the federal government was planning to create additional jobs through increased activities in the leather industry, bearing in mind that small scale business will spring up.
Acknowledging Nigeria’s present low cost of labour, Onu said taking advantage of the policy was necessary because Nigeria had been ranked in eight position on the global leather export index.
The minister also argued that the Leather Science and Research Industry in Kaduna would take care of the hazards, which accompany the processing.
In his own remarks, the Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, disclosed that FEC deliberated on the recent protest by members of the Shi’ite group in different parts of Abuja who are demanding the release of their leader, Ibrahim El-Zakzaki from custody.
According to him, the Minister of Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Mohammed Bello, promised to take charge of the development.